CEDIA’s judges couldn’t stop talking about this project by New Zealand’s Liquid Automation that won the 2020 Award for Best Auto, Marine, or Aircraft (Asia Pacific). Some quotes: “This is a really good job of power management. There’s great cable work in this rack, especially as compact as it is. Masterful.”
This yacht – designed to anchor for long periods – features critical security and navigation system integration along with networking and distributed audio and video.
Liquid Automation says, “Living quarters for guests and the owners give a comfortable and private space to get away and relax, while common/social areas give complete entertainment and ambiance solutions. The vessel is available for charter in the South Pacific so it will play host to several guests. This requires a system as discrete and simple to use as possible without compromising any features or functionality.”
Simply put, any guest who boards needs to be able to call up the tech amenities with as short a learning curve as possible.
That’s part of the reason CEDIA’s judges also gave this project the 2020 CEDIA Award for Best Innovative Solution. The challenges that come with every marine integration are known quantities: space for racks and cabling and devices will be extraordinarily tight, and great care must be taken to ensure that the elements aren’t damaging delicate electronics. Add to that systems that may assist in navigation and security, and marine integrations become uniquely difficult.
But for a firm to really take a project such as this to the next level, all of those factors must be coupled with a brilliant design that makes the seafaring tech experience indistinguishable from what one might find in a high-end luxury home on land. That’s what Liquid Automation did here, from the camera surveillance rigs to the multiple zones of audio and video. Additionally, the integrator had to travel quite a distance from their home base to get to the yacht’s construction site. Liquid Automation says, “We could not have accomplished this feat without our documentation process. It may mean extra work at the front end, but it guaranteed a smooth run once done and successful result.”
Time and a shifting brief were also challenges here: “Given the tight time frame and the constantly evolving system requirements, we believe that we have engineered a truly immersive and engaging system.”
The project includes five zones of audio and video, fives zones of audio-only with hidden speakers, two navigation stations, a robust networking system with remote monitoring to update and troubleshoot, rock-solid security solutions, and a user interface that’s second to none. Liquid Automation says, “The interface was designed to guide the user through the process with the addition of simple questions and prompts. Any delays associated with equipment turning on are displayed to the user, and a countdown timer is shown so they know exactly what is going on.”
Another key element in any marine integration: power management. Liquid Automation says, “As this was a new build, we had to organize a central UPS for the system. This UPS also provides a seamless switch-over facility that keeps all the AV and control equipment online while the yacht shifts from generator power to shore power supply. If this were not in place there would be instances when the yacht would have all systems go offline.”
Liquid Automation – who’ve won CEDIA Awards for their yacht integrations in years past – notes that this was a repeat client. “The owners of this vessel are very particular and know exactly what they want. We had the pleasure of fitting out their original motor yacht in 2007. They had input throughout the build process to ensure the result satisfied every desire from their dream boat.”